The China-India Comparison with Lots of Facts – Part 2/5

January 1, 2012

It is a fact that China has done more to reduce severe poverty than any nation on the earth and 90% of global poverty reduction starting in the 1980s took place in China. In addition, the Chinese Communist Party, starting in 1949, was the first government in China’s long history to have an organized plan to reduce poverty in that country.

Even during Mao’s era, there were annual improvements in the economy, health, life span, mortality rates and lifestyles in spite of the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution.

To create an in-depth profile of China, I’ve written more than a thousand posts and a half million words. To talk about the reason India’s economy will not surpass China for a long time led to this post.

Then, Manjeet Pavarti, an Indian citizen, challenged my opinions on this subject. It is obvious that Pavarti must be a nationalist who loves his country—an admirable trait except when a patriot is misguided and possibly misinformed and/or uninformed.

In Pavarti’s last comment of October 16, 2010 at 01:33, he challenged my sources—a photojournalist (Tom Carter) with extensive experience traveling in China and India, and my use of evidence from The Economist.

To correct the shortcomings of the first post on this topic, I talked to Gurnam S. Brard, the author of East of Indus, My Memoires of Old Punjab. He agreed with my opinion and said there are many in India like Pavarti that refuse to see the problems that hold India back from achieving its potential.

I also talked to Alon Shalev, author of The Accidental Activist. Shalev told me of his extensive trip through India with his wife and his impressions were the same as Tom Carter and Gurnam Brard.

Next, is Foreign Policy magazine’s Prime Numbers, Mega Cities, where there are no opinions—just facts. I’m going to cover “three” that are roadblocks to India future economic growth.

Continued on January 2, 2012 in The China-India Comparison with Lots of Facts – Part 3 or return to Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Note: This revised and edited post first appeared on October 22, 2010 as India Falling Short


The China-India Comparison with Lots of Facts – Part 1/5

December 31, 2011

This post was originally a result of a comment on the China Law Blog, which chastised me because, “He wanted me to provide a super-quick summary of The Economist cover story comparing India with China, but it (I) did not,” which was correct then.

Returning to this subject is because of my twelve-part debate with Troy Parfitt. Mr. Parfitt claimed, “Corruption in India isn’t germane to the debate.” In fact, most if not all of the facts and comparisons used during the debate were not relevant according to Mr. Parfitt unless those facts supported his opinions of China.

At one point, Mr. Parfitt mentioned reviews of his book in Publisher’s Weekly in defense of his book not being racisit. He claimed the South China Morning Post didn’t say that. Neither did Publishers Weekly, the Korean Herald, The Vancouver Sun… and none of the Amazon reviewers [that may change].

However, Publisher’s Weekly [PW] did say this of his book, “The result is mostly travelogue told from an outsider’s perspective, contextualized with overviews of major events in Chinese history. Parfitt argues that China will not rule the world, because as a nation it is more interested in the appearance of success than actual substance. He suggests that culturally, China has little to offer…” In addition, PW says, “his book lacks the precise facts and figures that he decries in other books promoting Chinese dominance.”

Basically, this is what the China Law Blog complained of in my post, Comparing India and China’s Economic Engines.

The facts and figures missing from Mr. Parfitt’s “Why China Will Never Rule the World – Travels in the Two Chinas” are important as the China Law Blog says. To judge one country without comparing its government, economy and culture to other countries offers no balance for readers to make informed decisions.

Continued on January 1, 2012 in he China-India Comparison with Lots of Facts – Part 2

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Note: This revised and edited post first appeared on October 22, 2010 as India Falling Short


Comparing India and China’s Potential for Economic Growth

December 30, 2011

The cover for The Economist of October 2 – 8, 2010, placed a bet on India in an economic race with China.

The Economist wants India to win this race, because India is a democracy as is the U.S., but what isn’t mentioned is that China is evolving into a republic closer to the original republic that the United States was in 1776 with a Chinese twist, which is what Dr. Sun Yat-sen wanted.

Some claim China is ruled be a dictator today but that is not true. China is a republic that is guided by the word of law, which is the essence of a Republic.  In 1982, China wrote a new Constitution that spelled out the law and China’s schoolchildren are taught what these laws mean and how to live with them. However, the Chinese Constitution is not the same as the one in the US, so the laws are different.

I opened The Economist magazine and read the two pieces the cover was about. One was India’s surprising economic miracle and the second piece was A bumpier but freer road.

On page 11, I read, “many observers think China has done a better job than India of curbing corruption…”

On page 77, a Western banker was quoted saying, “It’s much easier to deal with the well-understood ‘organization chart’ of China Inc than the freewheeling chaos of India.”

Corruption exists in every country and Transparency International attempts to define and identify what global corruption looks like. Comparing China and India, we discover that while India’s corruption appears to be getting worse, corruption in China is improving due to the evolution of its new legal system.

In fact, in the past 3 years, the perception of corruption in India was 74%, [in the United States that perception was 72%], while in China it was only 46%.

In addition, the BBC reported recently, “Widespread corruption in India costs billions of dollars and threatens to derail the country’s growth…”

After I read both pieces in The Economist comparing China with India, it was obvious that India would never beat China economically without controlling its corruption, shrinking severe poverty and increasing literacy. Overall, the latest World Bank data shows that India’s poverty rate is 27.5% [330 million people], based on India’s current poverty line of $1.03 per person per day and an illiteracy rate of almost 26% [312 million people].

In comparison, literacy in China is more than 94% and the World Bank says in 2004, people in China living in poverty represented 2.8% of the population.

There are more reasons The Economist is wrong about India winning this economic race just because it is a democracy. One reason is that America’s Founding Fathers hated democracy and had a good reason.

Live Journal goes into detail on this topic. Live Journal says, “It would be an understatement to say that the (U.S.) Founding Fathers hated democracy. They warned against it vehemently and relentlessly. They equated it–properly–with mob rule.”

 

The Founders of the US, who hated democracy, built a free country [a republic]. Our [meaning many Americans] ignorance of history, which has led to a love of democracy, is causing the US to surrender its freedoms at an alarming rate.

Dr. Sun Yat-sen (1866 – 1925), known as the father of modern China [by both China and Taiwan], said he wanted to model China’s government after America but by combining Western thought with Chinese tradition.

When he said this, it was 1910, and America, by definition, was still a republic. Once you read the two pieces in The Economist, you may understand why India’s democracy cannot beat China’s growing republic.

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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 This revised and edited post first appeared October 13, 2010.


Going to School with Dad on My Back – Part 3/3

December 27, 2011

Many poor Chinese parents, as Going to School with Dad on My Back (1998) depicts, did not always have enough income to send their child or all of their children to school. Contrary to popular belief outside of China, in many villages parents are allowed to have more than one child [Note: see The Controversy, Complexity and Reality behind China’s One-Child Policy].

In the film, the widowed father spins a water bottle to decide which of his two children will go to school.  When the bottle comes to rest, the handle points to his seven-year-old son Shiwa instead of the older sister.

Thus, Shiwa wins the opportunity to earn an education due to the spin of a bottle.  He then starts the long daily walk to school and his sister remains behind, toiling in the fields. Eventually a marriage is arranged for her. The roads Shiwa walks are made of dirt and he has to wade across a river to reach the village where the school is located.

Unlike most Chinese films imported to the West that focus on kung fu, this movie shows the story of a young boy’s life in a poor village in rural China much as it remains today in much of rural China.

It’s no secret that I taught in California’s public schools in the United States for thirty years. In China, the children of poor immigrants leap at the chance to earn an education and work their way out of poverty.

However, as I can testify, in the US, most children from poor families do the worst academically. The difference is one of philosophy.

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy says, “A hallmark of Confucius’ thought is his emphasis on education and study,” something missing in Western philosophy.

In fact, I heard many American parents tell their children that if they didn’t like what I was teaching, they didn’t have to cooperate.

In the movie, the father places his hopes and dreams on the shoulders of his young son in this true story of family sacrifice and a father’s love.

This movie not only provides its audience with a close-up look at rural China but also how Confucianism works in the family.  I’m not going to give away the ending but I will say this much—what Shiwa does at the end of the movie demonstrates how much of an influence Confucius has on the Chinese family and the why/how of children showing love and respect to their parents.

You may be able to download the full film at Typepad.com. Other movies that I have reviewed that depict the value of an education in China are Not One Less and Mao’s Last Dancer

Return to Going to School with Dad on My Back – Part 2 or start with Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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Going to School with Dad on My Back – Part 2/3

December 26, 2011

No country has built a world class, modern educational system over night, as you shall learn in this post.

Based on a true story, Going to School with Dad on My Back (1998) is an excellent film that accurately portrays the difficulties many children from poor families in rural areas of China experience to earn a meaningful education.

Most Americans do not realize that partly subsidized private schools in China, both in urban and rural areas, were not always free. Parents needed to pay a fee for their children to attend school as the father does for his son in the 1998 film.

However, China’s education system is evolving as public education evolved in the United States.

For example, secondary schooling in the United States started as an essentially elite pursuit, with a mere 2 percent of the population acquiring the equivalent of a high school education in 1870, the earliest year for which data are available.

Then from 1900 to 1996, the percentage of teenagers that graduated from high school in the US increased from about 6 percent to almost 69 percent today [the highest US high school graduation rate was 77% in 1969], which demonstrates that public education in the US evolved and is still evolving as it is in China. Source: EdWeek.org

In the movie, which was released in 1998, the father had to pay a fee for his son to attend the closest rural elementary school.  Today, paying a fee to attend school may not be the case. Starting in 2010, China implemented serious legislation to prevent any attempts by schools [private or public] to collect illegal charges. Source: Xinhuanet.com

Xiong Bingqi, the deputy director of a Beijing-based private non-profit organization on educational policy, noted that enhancing the quality of compulsory education would help put an end to charging school enrollment fees.

The University of Michigan says China’s “Compulsory Education law took effect in 1986 and made requirements and deadlines for the public to receive a free education. The law guaranteed school-age children the right to receive a nine-year education—six years of primary education, and three years of secondary education.

However, there are fully subsidized schools in China and partly subsidized schools, which means parents may be asked to pay a tuition fee and other fees [regardless of the law] required by the private schools that are partially subsidized. The partially subsidized private schools are an attempt by China’s government to increase literacy.

Continued on December 21, 2011 in Going to School with Dad on My Back – Part 3 or return to Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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